This article is intended for helping these of our customers who have
prefered not to ask us for consultancy during the survey design process.
We strongly recommend, if you are not an expert in survey design, to
ask for our services so that you can make the most form your survey.
Please be sure that an ill designed survey not only can give you
non-suitable information but also can mislead you in your decision
process. A badly designed survey also burns your audience for a while,
in best case.
We recommend you to strictly follow these guidelines to design your survey:
- Answer yourself in just one simple statement what is your goal for this survey.
If you cannot, it is quite posible that you need not one but several
different surveys. It is very important that you resist the impulse to
make a big broad survey to answer any kind of mixed questions. Go
straight to the point!
- Write down a list of questions,
simple, direct and short, following your goal. Order your questions
accordingly to your importance criteria. Be very careful with the
order: a question should not produce bias in the answering of the next
- Review your questions and their order. It is not posible to change the survey once it is published.
- Keep a low number of questions.
If your survey is longer than 10 questions you are going to burn your
audience and for sure you are going to gather far less information. If
your survey has more than 15 questions it is probably not well
designed. Choose only those questions which seem more relevant to you.
- For each question, write down a list of answers, simple, direct and short, preferably 5 or less and never more than 7. List the posible answers in a logical order.
- Do not use free-text answers
if it is posible to get the information using a normalised answer. This
kind of information is hard for you to process and can lead you to ill
conclusions. Free-text answers are good for qualitative research, not
- Do not take anything for granted.
If your list of posible answers to a question does not cover every
posibility you are going to make your customer feel frustrated.
We hope this points can help you to make a better, more useful survey.
There are two main benefits of making a survey: For one side you gather vital information for the development of your business; on the other making surveys reinforces the image of your company in front of your customers.